Differentiated Numeracy Lesson Plans

Differentiation is a very important aspect of teaching in every classroom, but especially a classroom catering for students with special needs. Differentiation of a lesson is necessary to reach the range of abilities and learning styles/needs evident in most classrooms, increasing participation and engagement of not only special needs students but also those without special needs.

The lessons provided have been structured so as to highlight three levels of differentiation. This is not fixed and can be expanded upon according to the needs of the students in your classroom. The lessons provided demonstrate three levels of differentiation that can be achieved within a single lesson catering to a range of learning styles and needs to ensure maximum and meaningful participation for all students.

Ways to differentiate a lesson:

  • Use of Life Skills curriculum for secondary students
  • Incorporation of collaborative or paired group work
  • Modifying the level of questioning
  • Complexity of language
  • Use of technology e.g. iPad, switches, visuals
  • Use of multisensory activities
  • Use of pictures and concrete objects
  • Size of text/images
  • colour or black and white
Level of prompts offered to participate and complete tasks successfully e.g. full physical, visual, gesture/sign, modelling and verbal prompts.
  • Form of assessment e.g. worksamples, multiple choice
  • Use of technology, assess against Life Skills Outcomes (secondary students).
The lessons provided demonstrate increasing levels of differentiation within the same lesson, beginning with the level at which all students in the class will be able to participate and achieve success (All students will….). The lesson plan then indicates the next level of differentiation characterised by instruction/activities/assessment of increasing difficulty which most students in the class should be able to complete (Most students will…..). Finally the lesson plan indicates the highest level of differentiation catering to a smaller number of higher or lower ability students and characterised by specific instruction/activities/assessment/support modifications within the same lesson (Some students will….).